Kashmir shuts to protest Sabzar’s killing
A complete shutdown was observed across Kashmir while fresh clashes between government forces and youth left scores of people injured.
The Authorities on Sunday clamped curfew and imposed restrictions as the resistance camp had called for two day shutdown to mourn the death of militants and a civilian killing in the subsequent protests that were witnessed over the killing of Sabzar Ahmad Bhat and his associate in South Kashmir area of Tral.
Though the authorities had said curfew would be imposed only in seven police station areas of Nowhatta, Rainawari, Khanyar, M.R. Gunj, Safa Kadal, Kralkhud and Maisuma in Srinagar on Sunday, the city was virtually sealed in the morning to prevent all kinds of vehicular movement. Heavy deployment of government forces was made in the old city areas of Srinagar to prevent protests.
One person was killed and 40 others were injured in clashes between the protesters and government forces on Saturday that engulfed all parts of Kashmir. A civilian was killed when protesters tried to breach the cordon of government forces in Saimoh village on Saturday where Hizbul commander Sabzar Ahmed Bhat and his accomplice were trapped. In clashes at other place, 40 people including 28 protesters and 12 security men were injured.
Out of the injured protesters eight are being treated for bullet injuries while seven have suffered pellet injuries and are admitted to different hospitals in Srinagar. Government had imposed restrictions under section 144 CrPc in Ganderbal, Badgam, Bandipora and Kupwara in north Kashmir while in south Kashmir, the districts of Anantnag, Kulgam, Pulwama and Shopian saw unprecedented security arrangements put in place to ensure minimum attendance at Bhat’s funeral prayers. Bhat was buried on late Saturday evening in his ancestral graveyard in Rathsun, a village in Tral tehsil.
His funeral prayers (fateha) were scheduled on Sunday to ensure people’s participation. People in thousands had arrived on Saturday from different places of south Kashmir to attend the burial of Sabzar and Faizan who were killed in a gunfight with the government forces in Saimoh village.
The authorities suspended internet services on mobile phones on Saturday in addition to suspension of outgoing call facility on prepaid mobile phones. On Sunday morning, call facility, incoming and outgoing, were suspended on all mobile phones whether post paid and prepaid. Only postpaid BSNL mobile phones are working at the moment. Train services between Baramulla and Bannihal towns were also suspended. The civil service (judicial) exam scheduled on Sunday were cancelled and all educational institutions have been ordered to remain closed on Monday in Kashmir. The seperatists have appealed people to march to Tral town on May 30 to offer funeral prayers and show solidarity with the slain Hizbul commander and his accomplice, both of whom belonged to Rathsuna village of Tral tehsil.
Fresh clashes between the protesting youth and government forces Sunday left three civilians injured in the south Kashmir district of Shopian. Clashes broke out after youth hit the streets at Meemandar area of Shopian and pelted rocks on the forces.
Witnesses said that forces retaliated by firing tear smoke shells and pellets. As per local sources three persons sustained injuries during the clashes who were shifted to a local hospital situated in a nearby village, Vehil. Two of them have pellet injuries while as the third is hit by a shell, hospital sources said adding they were stable.
The Sopore town also observed complete shutdown and all the shops and business establishments remained shut while as public transport was off the roads in all over the town however in some parts of town forces have been deployed including at main chowk, tehsil road and shahdargah chowk to prevent any untoward incident in town –
Protesters clashed with government forces in Warpora area of Sopore in north Kashmir’s Baramulla district on Sunday. As per reports scores of youth assembled in main chowk area of Warpora and pelted stones on the forces, who retaliated by bursting tear smoke shells. A complete shutdown was observed in the area to mourn the death of two Hizb militants.
Situation under control: Police
Police on Sunday said that except for six incidents of stone pelting in Pulwama, Kulgam, Shopian and Sopore situation across Kashmir remained peaceful and under control.
In order to create disturbances miscreants assembled on roads and pelted stones on police and security forces deployment and also on the vehicular traffic. In Pulwama, a group of miscreants also pelted stones on 182 CRPF camp at Tahab. Police and security forces used maximum restraint while dealing with the situation at these places and miscreants were chased away. As a precautionary measure, restric